With the Elimination Chamber event rapidly approaching, WWE has to quickly put together a card for that event and that started on this week’s RAW. We have the first match announced for the women which will be for the RAW Women’s Championship. As previously reported, Lacey Evans will challenge Asuka for the title that she has held since SummerSlam in August.
What led to this decision on Evans being Asuka’s opponent stemmed from the advertised encounter she had with Charlotte Flair. Charlotte’s father, Ric Flair, says that Evans has all the physical qualifications, looks, and drive to be a star. He goes on record by saying their relationship is strictly casual. Ric then says that they are coming for Asuka’s title.
Evans continues the talk by saying that Charlotte is a fool for turning away her father who is one of the greatest sports entertainers of all time. This prompted Charlotte to come out.
Charlotte adds to the conversation that all she’s done for the last seven years is try to protect and add on to the Flair legacy. Evans then tries to reason with her wondering why they can’t work together as she would be a much better partner than Asuka. This then breaks down into a match between the two and if Evans wins she will be able to face Asuka for the RAW Women’s Title.
Lacey Evans defeated Charlotte Flair via DQ
With a title opportunity on the line, Evans wasn’t going to stop the mind games with Charlotte. She was able get in the head of The Queen so much that Charlotte was disqualified from not easing up off of Evans in the corner.
The next match of the night finally saw Lana get revenge after months and months of torment. For weeks on end, Lana would mercilessly be put through the announce table at ringside by Nia Jax. In a tables match on this week’s RAW, things seemed to go forward with business as usual. Jax tormented Lana power bombing her numerous times in the ring. This causes great concern for Lana’s tag team partner Naomi.
Lana seizes her opportunity with a table that was set up at ringside. She had Jax on the apron and was trying to knock her off to come crashing down through the table for a victory but to no avail. Jax then misses with a leg drop on the apron.
Lana takes advantage of a wounded Jax and pushes her into a nearby table for the victory. This match should have received the proper time and been done at the TLC pay-per-view in December but I guess it is better late than never.
This sets up for the last women’s match of the night. Last week, Naomi and Lana earned a number one contenders spot for the Women’s Tag Team Titles which has pushed them into this feud with Jax and Shayna Baszler. Naomi then took on Baszler in an impromptu match.
Naomi defeated Shayna Baszler
In a fresh singles match Naomi was able to pull away with a pin on Baszler. Baszler pulled out her arsenal as she does by targeting the arm of her opponent. She misses the stomp on Naomi’s arm the first time but follows up and then connects.
Baszler continues to work the arm until Naomi creates separation and begins to start on her offense. She gets in a head scissors take down as well as a facebuster. Moments later a nice counter by Baszler occurs as she transitions into the Kirifuda Clutch. Naomi rolls to the bottom rope to break the hold.
Baszler then targets Lana at ringside. This misjudgment on her part is what cost her the match. As she re-enters the ring, Naomi is able to execute the small package for a victory.
At this time there is no confirmation on when Lana and Naomi will get their title match. Most likely it will be added to the Elimination Chamber event.
Royal Rumble winner Bianca Belair was also present at RAW. She was speaking backstage on her potential opponents for WrestleMania when RAW Women’s Champion Asuka appeared. Asuka congratulated Belair on her huge victory but let her know she is still not ready for her. Belair ended the segment letting The Empress know that if she retains the RAW Women’s Title at Elimination Chamber that she may see more of the EST on the red brand.
Let’s get into the Winners & Losers of the week:
WINNER: Lacey Evans
Being placed in a championship match makes Lacey the biggest winner of the week. Lacey has surprisingly been getting the better of Charlotte from their feud. Charlotte is still coming off protected by a DQ loss but Lacey did pin her from a few weeks ago. I doubt that Lacey will go over on Asuka and I am for certain that Charlotte will end up facing Asuka still at WrestleMania. It just seems to obvious.
I am also guessing this means that Lacey has moved on from Peyton Royce? If that is the case, can we finally push Peyton instead of having her on Main Event? Where she doesn’t even win.
WWE has all these women at the performance center and NXT girls they could certainly use on Main Event instead.
WINNERS: Naomi & Lana
Big wins for both women. Picking up these wins however may mean they don’t end up winning the tag titles. To be honest, this is the perfect way to put a title on Lana. Naomi also hasn’t had a title in so long and is needed for her. I wouldn’t mind her going for Asuka instead but this works.
Lana finally was able to put Nia through a table also, so we can put that behind us – maybe?
LOSER: Charlotte Flair
I doubt Charlotte will stay in the losing column for long but this week wasn’t her week. She delivered a good promo however prior to her match against Lacey.
LOSER: Nia Jax
I feel between Nia and Shayna…Nia took the bigger loss this week. Although I must say, Nia has been giving me nothing but laughs since “My Hole” has been trending on Twitter since last night. Many superstars are also talking about it on social media despite WWE “beeping” it out on the YouTube video.
Can we just imagine the chant if a live crowd was there?
With RAW seemingly not having the Elimination Chamber match for the women (unless they use it as a number one contender match), it seems that SmackDown may get that honor.
What did you think of this week’s RAW? Who were your Winners & Losers? Leave your thoughts below!!